Los Angeles native Victor Quijada brings together classical dance composition and west coast hip-hop like no one before him. Bursting onto the scene with his Montreal-based company in 2002, Quijada uprooted the boundaries of contemporary dance, creating a singular language that is uniquely his own. His dance technique, the RUBBERBAND Method is now taught in some of the most prestigious dance schools and conservatories from Los Angeles to London.
Running time: 75 min – 1hr 45 w/ intermission. Depending on program.
Celebrating over 15 years of making dance, Vic’s Mix highlights the evolution of Quijada’s signature style, featuring reimagined works originally created for RUBBERBANDance Group as well as commissions for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Scottish Dance Theatre. Premiering in 2016 at the Festival International DanseEncore, Vic’s Mix has gone on to tour internationally, most recently performing throughout Mexico and Germany.
Ever So Slightly
Running Time: Evening Length (TBD) World Premiere December 2018, Place des Artes, Opera de Montreal Co-Commissioned by World Music / CRASHarts
Ever So Slightly explores the behavioral mechanisms and instinctual reflexes we develop to face aggression and the constant flow of stimulus bombarding us every day. The work takes a look at change, the many elements that lead to it, and the breaking point that makes change – positive or negative – possible. Directing a group of athletic dancers who have mastered his RUBBERBAND Method, Quijada combines delicacy and finesse with brute, high-voltage movement to capture the energy of urgency, revolt, and flight from danger. Music collaborator Jasper Gahunia, creates a bold and original soundscape that mixes electronic music, breakbeats, and vintage sampling. With an artistic team comprised of new and longtime collaborators, a company of 10 inspired dancers, and two live musicians including a DJ mixing the soundscore on stage, Ever So Slightly is Quijada’s largest creative undertaking to date.
(NDP Tour Support Available)
Running Time: Evening Length TBD Development Phase: 2019-2020 / World Premiere: Fall 2020
Victor Quijada’s new, deeply personal work draws its inspiration from his experience growing up in L.A., a first-generation Mexican-American. Coming out of retirement and returning to the stage, Victor along with 6 company dancers explore themes of identity, home and motherland. Trenzado/Braided features a soundscore remixed live onstage by composer and DJ Jasper Gahunia who will sample traditional Mexican Corridos, Ranchera, Norteño music & Canto Cardenche, a little known, raw and vibrant singing tradition from the rural north of Mexico. This evening-length work challenges Victor and the audience to reckon with their own ideas of origin, belonging and displacement – topics pulsing in our society today.
*See Outreach for special activities available throughout the development phase in 19/20.
Fils de Ville (City Thread)
Running Time: 30 minutes
Dance maverick Victor Quijada reimagines the city as stage in this new and innovative contemporary dance experience. Featuring a cast of 30+ dancers comprised of company members and dancers/dance students from the local community, Fils de Ville taps into the vibrant energy of public spaces and our culture of smartphone technology to create a unique, shared experience between audience, performers and the environment. Participants download a smartphone app specifically designed for the piece, and embark on a sensorial experience – activating different music compositions based on their movement throughout the performance site. Audience members are free to create their own adventure by choosing one or more of the dancers to follow along various designated paths. Fils de Ville pays tribute to the effervescence of urban environments while celebrating the unpredictable exhilaration of live performance. BYOEB (Bring Your Own Ear Buds) and let your dance adventure begin.
Fils de Ville premiered in August 28, 2017 in a celebration of the city of Montreal’s 375th anniversary with support from Place des Arts de Montreal. Local dancers included students from Montreal’s École Supérieure de Ballet and École de Danse Contemporaine de Montreal.
Fils de Ville requires a 2 week dance residency + advanced site visit with Victor. Week 1 – Victor Quijada and a RBDG dancer to set the work on local dancers. Week 2 – Full company arrives for on-site rehearsals with local dancers.
About the App: Audience members download the performance smartphone app with active GPS that holds a music playlist activated when they move through the designated public space. With the event’s soundtrack in the spectator’s hands, the performance begins in one central meeting point. Eventually, the dancers separate into smaller groups, moving throughout the area, and the sound score changes as audience members hit various hotspots designated throughout the site.
Trenzado/Braided Outreach Activities Available During the 19/20 Season
These community conversations are a key element to the development of Trenzado/Braided and building a deeper relationship with the different communities surrounding the presenting venue. During the 19-20 tour of Vic’s Mix and Ever So Slightly, choreographer Victor Quijada, music collaborator Jasper Gahunia and dancers will engage in the Share-Backs. Victor will share his origin story and present excerpts from his solo and discuss the music collaboration. The audience is invited to engage in the dialogue with the company, sharing their own personal stories and perspectives on Trenzado/Braided themes of origin, homeland and identity. Victor is excited to take these talks to the community. They can be organized in studios, on campus, in community centers, church halls etc to maximize reaching the surrounding population.
Corridos & Cardenche 2.0: DJ Lec Dem & Artist Talk
Led by composer Jasper Gahunia and choreographer Victor Quijada, these longtime collaborators discuss the various styles, history & origins of the Mexican music featured in Trenzado/Braided which include Corridos, Rancheras, Norteño and Canto Cardenche. Gahunia will deconstruct the music in real time for the audience, illustrating how he mixes the original songs to create the Trenzado/Braided soundscore.
RUBBERBAND Method Workshop for Professional Dancers and Graduating Students This 90-min workshop outlines the RUBBERBAND Method, a movement technique developed by Victor Quijada. Based on the RUBBERBANDance Group company class, it prepares dancers for the demands of his choreography. The class addresses the following basic principles: distribution of weight outside of the plum-line axis of the upright skeletal structure; agility in hand, elbow, and shoulder inversions; and use of the body and all its surfaces as 3-dimensional and multi-directional carving tools. Participants are introduced to a hybrid movement style that is influenced by urban and contemporary dance vocabulary, while emphasizing interpretation, decision-making, use of rhythmic variations and partnering. It prepares contemporary and classically-trained dancers for floor-work commonly associated with breakdance. With the RUBBERBAND Method, dancers will be ready to engage with the floor with authority and finesse, while negotiating their body through space using techniques that are adapted from urban approaches. The RUBBERBAND Method also brings awareness to focus and visual connections in partnering and performance.
RUBBERBAND Method Master Class for 16yrs + and First Year College Dance Students Victor Quijada’s choreography combines urban, contemporary and classical principles and is influenced by experiences of the street, stage and camera. In this class, dancers are taught exercises that build agility and precision whether dancing on their feet or on the floor or upside down. It is an introduction to the RUBBERBAND Method, characterized by the hybrid stylings of contemporary, classical and urban dancing.
Schooltime Matinee: The Breakdown The Breakdown is presented in a lecture demonstration format that includes excerpts of various RUBBERBANDance Group work and culminates in a Q&A session with students. The activity provides insight into the development of Quijada’s RUBBERBAND Method illustrated through excerpts of the company’s repertory. This is behind-the-scenes event where dance and conversation are at the forefront and showcases RUBBERBANDance Group’s spontaneous and contemporary style. The Breakdown can be tailored for different audiences – from dance aficionados to novices. Length: 50 minutes/includes Q&A session
Grade range: Grade 6-High School
Short Film Screening/ Dance for the Camera RUBBERBANDance Group has created a number of dance on film works. The company is able to offer an evening screening and discussion, allowing audiences to become better acquainted with Victor Quijada’s choreography and to have a discourse on the differences between creating dance for film and stage. In addition to a number of high-quality short films, the evening can also include a selection of music clips and videos from special projects. With viewers’ feedback and participation, the evening of screenings can be tailored to specific interests, with or without the presence of the choreographer as a mediator.
Pre- or Post-show talks, lecture demonstrations, and panel discussion participation available upon request.
“Quijada’s choreography blurs hard edges of breaking with contemporary sensibility, boasting delectably clever partnering and buoyant musicality”
Time Out Chicago
“A marvel of speed, precision, and invention, Victor Quijada is riveting as a performer. […] . As artistic director/choreographer of Montreal’s RUBBERBANDance Group, he mixes hip hop with contemporary and classical dance in a speedy, über-physical hybrid that blends easy elegance with male-female confrontations that threaten to become pileups. When he’s finished, the audience is whooping”
“In advancing his craft, Quijada has lost none of his originality of style nor the sheer physical excitement of his street dance signature”